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From Jessica Pearson in Suits to Alicia Florrick in The Good Wife, TV’s most powerful female characters have taught us how impactful a well-tailored outfit can be. CHERIDA is the epitome of luxury corporate style and shows us exactly how a well-tailored personalised suit can not only render the boardroom speechless, but can make you feel powerful with a wink of sexy.

Words By Srishti Narang

December, 4th 2020

Since the beginning of time, women have been objectified and judged for what they wear, especially in the workplace. Throughout history, the majority of professional environments have been mostly occupied by men. It is only much later that women broke through this previously inaccessible space, transforming the workplace.

Staiy was in conversation with Cherida Patterson, the founder of CHERIDA, who set up the brand back in 2018 to empower women in the corporate world. Cherida takes us through her cathartic exploration of combining confidence and power with style and quality in her ethically produced business wear.

What’s the story behind your brand?
It was back when I was living and working in Dubai and couldn’t find a power suit that really fit my personality, or had any style for that matter. So I decided to go back to London and follow my passion of empowering women through tailored suits with quality designs. After returning to London, I had to learn everything about the fashion industry, about finding the perfect suppliers and factories. It was in this process that I realized how inhumane and unethical the fashion system is, which led me to combine my passion for both fashion and sustainability. I sourced all my materials locally from the UK and started to do more ‘made-to-order’ pieces for customers. I think it’s very important for me and the brand that we use materials that are responsibly sourced, supporting local suppliers and businesses.



What has your experience been as a woman leading her own business, a space usually more reserved for men?

I think that women are all about empowering other women. I always see successful female figures with this tribe around them. What we’re doing as leaders is changing the paradigm. I think when women support each other, there is a lot more collaboration and people sharing their resources. It creates a considerably more open and beautiful space to grow. I know other women who have worked in male-dominated corporations who have had quite a different experience. What I will say is that with the ladies I dress, the suits have a significantly positive impact on them. One of my clients said she felt like she had found herself again, and that she felt so much more empowered. That’s also a significant part of my brand, where women feel like they’re capable of doing anything.

Why custom-made suits?

If you look at the current market for women’s tailored suits, it is significantly more limited than the range available to men. That’s because women’s bodies vary so much more so it’s harder to create a piece that is adapted to all these shapes. I knew that I wanted to focus on women’s position in the corporate landscape. And I think that customers want something personalized and customizable. It’s really about creating this one-on-one experience with the garment, like you’re learning to fall in love again. Wearing something bespoke really gives you that feeling because it builds that emotional tie with what you’re purchasing. Ready-to-wear, on the other hand, is part of a fast-paced, consumer lifestyle where you buy something, wear it, and then get bored of it after a few uses. That doesn’t fit into my brand’s ethics. It’s up to the customers to love the clothing, but if they buy ready-to-wear, there is less of that personal, emotional attachment. Ultimately, I want to change consumer behaviour in that sense, to drive a healthier fashion ecosystem. I think it’s so beautiful and empowering to have something tailored or customized to suit your own body because it shows us that all bodies are amazing in their own way.

How would you describe CHERIDA in three words?

Innovative, accessible, and sexy! Innovative and accessible, because we offer our garments and tailoring services online, which is actually quite challenging compared to the traditional process of tailoring. And sexy because I want to make women feel gorgeous in their suits.

Could you give us a sneak-peek on what we can expect from your next collection?

I would definitely say, you can expect a lot more vibrant colors. I truly believe that tailored outfits don’t have to be the office standard black and blues. CHERIDA is constantly evolving. We’re currently looking to expand beyond corporate attire. So, be prepared to channel your inner boss lady not just at work but at home and for every occasion in between!